Matching wine with salt cod dishes

The idea from this post came from an observation from my mother. The other day I was making fish and chips. For my fish, i used fresh cod which she complained that it tasted anything. In her mind, the idea of savoury cod was the one that was salted and left in water for a few days before cooking. This got me thinking about it, which was a regular dish during Easter when i was a child in Venezuela, so i thought about dropping a line or two about the subject. Coming from an Italian family, this was a traditional dish that we used to have every good friday.

Easter is coming soon and I thought that it would be just appropiate to talk about a dish that is very famous in Spanish Gastronomy. Bacalao or Salt Cod.

Salted dry cod cut at the Boqueria market in Barcelona.

Salt cod, a popular Good Friday dish in many parts of the Mediterranean, is cooked many different ways which suggest different wine pairings.

Pairing salt cod (bacalao) with wine is a tricky business, and one can go seriously wrong. Salt cod’s high salinity and complexity of the way it is normally cooked with other flavors such as onion, tomatoes, potatoes, olives, olive oil, etc. make it tough to find a wine that stands up to the  flavors and that complements them.

In this post, I will give 3 reccomendations for some of my favorite white wines. On a later one, I will discuss pairings with red and orange wine.

Here are my suggestions for wine varietals to accompany Cod:

Chardonnay (unoaked) – Chardonnay has a consistent structure and an agreeable freshness. It works well with dishes containing flaked salt cod which normally retains more salt than filets of salt cod.

Carménère –  This Chilean red-wine varietal stands up well to salt cod dishes which contain green peppers, a notoriously tricky flavor when it comes to wine pairings.

Pinot Noir – This grape, known for its smoothness and balance, is recommended when salt cod is roasted or served with few other flavors.

Spanish wine reccomendations

Voir la photo agrandie du produit. Cette photo s'ouvre dans une visionneuse et peut comporter des obstacles à l'accessibilité.

Chartier Rueda 2014. SAQ Code:  12831101. Price: $19.40

The wines of Francois Chartier have a well established presence in the Quebec Market. This Verdejo offer aromas of pears, white flowers with a touch of blanched almonds. On the mouth, the wine has a pleasant voluminous texture with fleshy fruit. Fresh finale. Will be good idea to pair it with Bacalao al pil-pil. 90/100

Voir la photo agrandie du produit. Cette photo s'ouvre dans une visionneuse et peut comporter des obstacles à l'accessibilité.

Hermanos Lurton Rueda Verdejo 2014. SAQ Code:  00727198. Price: $16.80

The Lurton brothers are a powerhouse trio. They make wine across the globe in Argentina, Chile, France and of course of Spain. This Verdejo offers a mix of white and citrus fruits with subtle notes of green pepper. On the mouth, the wine is medium to full body. Fresh with more citrus fruits and a nice mineral undertone. Good quality for the price paid. Will pair nicely with cod preparations involving baked onions and green pepper. 92\100.

Voir la photo agrandie du produit. Cette photo s'ouvre dans une visionneuse et peut comporter des obstacles à l'accessibilité.

Agarena de Murviedro Blanco 2014.-Viura and Sauvignon Blanc. D.O.P Valencia. SAQ Code:  12663101. Price: $9.55

Don’t let the price fool you about the quality of this wine.  On the nose, the wine displays notes of white lilies, hay and citrus fruits. On the mouth, fresh, medium to full body with flavors of pears and tropical fruits. Excellent quality price ratio. Will pair nicely with more traditional preparations such as boiled Bacalao with potatoes and olive oil. 91\100








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